Lavrov discusses with Kazakh and Turkish counterparts preparations for Astana talks on Syria

Moscow, SANA – Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov discussed with Kazakh counterpart Kairat Abdrakhmanov preparations for talks on the settlement of the crisis in Syria due to be held in the Kazakh capital of Astana.

The Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Monday that Lavrov and Abdrakhmanov discussed coordination in the international arena, including preparations for the international meeting on the Syrian settlement in Astana.

Lavrov also discussed the preparations for the Astana talks over the phone with Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu, with the two sides exchanging viewpoints regarding the situation in Syria.

The Astana talks are scheduled to be held next Monday, January 23, with the aim of pushing forwards the process of the settlement of the crisis in Syria, particularly after the agreement on cessation of hostilities.

On a relevant note, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that intra-Syrian talks in Astana which are being prepared complement the Geneva talks, pointing out that an invitation for the US administration to attend these talks have not been made yet.

In the same context, the Russian President’s Special Representative for the Middle East and Africa, Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov discussed in a phone call with Deputy UN Special Envoy for Syria Ramzy Ezzeldin Ramzy preparations for the meeting in Astana.

According a statement by the Russian Foreign Ministry, Bogdanov also discussed with Egyptian Ambassador in Russia Mohamed Abdul-Sattar al-Badri preparations for the Astana meeting along with other issues, with emphasis on resolving the crisis in Syria and resuming intra-Syrian dialogue.

R. Milhem / Hazem Sabbagh

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